God sends the whole family to Bethel in Canaan and tells Jacob to build an altar there.
Jacob finally acts rightly and tells everyone to give over their foreign gods. They also get rid of their earrings and wash themselves and change their clothes. They bury their foreign things where they are and then travel on. They have purified themselves before God before building the altar.
Jacob wants to obey fully. God appears to Jacob and renews his vow to multiply his descendants and to give the land to him and his descendants.
Rachel gives birth to her second and last son. Jacob names him Benjamin. Rachel has a very hard time in labor, but the midwife says to her, “Don’t be afraid, because you have another son.” It was what she had wanted. She clung to her foreign god and asked for another son. She feared that she wouldn’t have children. She feared that she wouldn’t have a son. And then she feared that she wouldn’t have another son. Having another son was supposed to relieve her fears, but she had put her hope in the wrong thing.
She dies while giving birth. She should have feared the Lord. She should have rejoiced and given thanks. That doesn’t mean she wouldn’t have died then. I do not know that at all. We can’t know. But we know right from wrong. She put her hope in the wrong thing.
She thought she needed children. She thought she needed a son. It wasn’t enough.
She thought she needed another son, but it brought on her death.
Idols are death to us. That’s where they lead. A strong desire that turns to action. A fear that leads to wandering away from God to put your trust in man. A love of self and the world that treats God as less than important. They are all roads leading to death.
Seek Jesus. Seek first His kingdom. Seek first righteousness. Then everything else will be added to you. We never need to seek after anything else.
What are you seeking after?